New sheriff in town: Miller making mark in wild, wild westby Javier Morales on Sep. 25, 2010, under Sports
This is part of this week’s installment of the “Nothing but the Notes” package, which is regularly published at WildcatSportsReport.com
One overlooked aspect of Josiah Turner‘s commitment to Arizona: Miller’s West coast recruiting success has already come to fruition in his first full year of recruiting in Tucson.
Josiah Turner, a 5-star point guard from Sacramento, is the sixth Miller recruit at Arizona from the western region of the United States.
The others are fellow Class of 2011 recruit Nick Johnson of Henderson, Nev., by way of Gilbert; Derrick Williams of La Mirada, Calif.; Solomon Hill and Jordin Mayes of Los Angeles; and Daniel Bejarano of Phoenix.
Much of the credit of the west coast recruiting success goes to assistants Archie Miller and James Whitford, who have covered the U.S. west of the Mississippi, while Book Richardson continues to make inroads in the east.
Before Miller arrived in Tucson in April 2009, he did not recruit a prospect west of Ohio while at Xavier. Developing connections and relationships in recruiting is essential, and Miller has worked as hard as any coach in the Pac-10 to make it happen.
In a recent interview with the Associated Press, Miller touched on the challenge that was presented to him in terms of recruiting in a new area.
“When you get to a new place, especially with what we had at Arizona with consecutive interim coaches and the odd transition, one of the things that gets lost in the shuffle is there wasn’t a lot of recruiting being done for a couple-year period of time,” Miller told the AP. “I don’t care what program you are, the great tradition you have, when that’s missing, whoever comes in is starting from scratch on a number of fronts.
“More than anything, people need to know who the head coach is. Everybody here knew who the head coach was for so many years (Lute Olson) and they have to get a chance to know who I am.”
His comment reflects what Las Vegas Bishop Gorman coach Grant Rice told me recently. He said that Miller has worked as hard as any coach he can remember reaching out and trying to become familiar with him.
Don’t forget to visit our partner site WILDABOUTAZCATS.com for daily Wildcat information